BlackBerry's co-founders considering acquisition of company, according to SEC filing

The Verge
BlackBerry founder Mike Lazaridis won't pursue bid for company
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BlackBerry founder Mike Lazaridis won't pursue bid for company

BlackBerry's co-founders could eventually retake ownership of the company they helped build. Mike Lazaridis — who retired from all official duties at BlackBerry in May — and Douglas Fregin today filed a notice with the SEC that hints at a potential acquisition of all shares they don't already collectively own. BlackBerry has of course expressed interest in a potential sale, and Lazaridis and Fregrin point to this in one section of the document. They've recruited Goldman Sachs, Centerview Partners, and other advisors to assist "with their review of strategic alternatives."

In light of the Issuer’s recent announcement that its board of directors has formed a Special Committee to explore strategic alternatives to enhance value and increase scale, the Reporting Persons are considering all available options with respect to their holdings of the Shares, including, without limitation, a potential acquisition of all the outstanding Shares of the Issuer that they do not currently own, either by themselves or with other interested investors (an "Acquisition").

"Other interested investors" means that the two former executives could be joined by any number of other parties. Lazaridis' interest in coming to the rescue of his former company was first reported last month by The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal. Beyond taking BlackBerry private, we've got little else to go on when it comes to potential plans Lazaridis would have for the brand. His track record is spotty, of course: Lazaridis oversaw BlackBerry's incredible rise in popularity among business customers, but he — along with Jim Balsillie — was also at the helm as the company's fortunes took a historically bad turn. Balsillie, also long removed from the company, seems content in retirement; he's not part of the Lazaridis / Fregin plan.

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